Category Archives: preying mantis

An ‘Energy Free’ Karate Punch

Newsletter 820 ~ Sign up now!

Arthritis and a Martial Arts Punch!

“It’s not how hard you can hit,
it’s how much weight you can deliver.”
Al Case

I just received a great letter,
a fellow name of Damian,
said Yogata helped his arthritis,
and he talked about how
he sometimes had trouble with a fist because of arthritis.

yoga martial arts style

Click on the cover!

I recommend Yogata,
or any form of yoga,
but I really want to talk about punches,
which may impact on concepts about arthritis.

Arthritis is an interesting condition,
doctors sometimes lump everything
under the term arthritis,
and there are a lot of causes
behind arthritis.
It’s all sort of generic,
but generic with a bite.

So here’s the thing:
injury leads to inflammation.
The body is swelling.
Sometimes the swelling is obvious,
sometimes not,
but the pain,
or lack of usability,
is real.

Many, many years ago
I realized I wasn’t a breaking kind of guy.
My instructor was,
many people are,
there is something seductive
about Power,
and power is often associated with breaking things.

But I figured out that it’s not how hard you hit,
it’s how much weight you can transfer into the opponent.
So I thought about it,
and I realized something:

“you don’t have to tighten the fist.”

This is weird,
we all tighten the fist,
and it is important…for beginners.

Tightening the fist upon impact
teaches focus,
introduces one to concepts of power,
but,
at a certain point,
you don’t need to tighten the fist.
Here’s something to think about”

take a stick and poke it into a watermelon.

Did the stick get ‘tight?’
No.
It just had to be aligned,
and it required a certain amount of ‘quick’ weight.
Although,
when you think about it,
you could puncture a watermelon with a stick
using ‘slow’ weight.

So I started working on the idea
of poking the bones of my arm/fist
through an opponent’s body
without tightening the fist.

Having the idea of puncturing the body
in my mind.

It worked.
No fanfare,
no big deal,
just relax,
align the bones,
feed a little energy into the structure
to keep everything in line,
relax and throw the body.

Worked like a charm.

And…
I started holding thumbtacks in my fist
and breaking things.

And…
here is the kicker,
the more I relaxed,
the better I was able to thrust my
thumbtack holding bones
through an object.

There’s all sorts of things to think about here.
My favorite is this:

if you threw 20 pounds at somebody it would hurt.
(especially if that 20 pounds
had 200 pounds of body behind it)

So when you tighten the arm,
when you focus the fist,
the tightening of the muscles actually holds the strike back.

That’s very zen,
very tai chi,
very true.

BUT,
don’t stop practicing with a tight fist,
you need a certain degree of focus to develop internal power.
And hitting with just the bones,
as I describe here,
is not the only strike,
and focusing the energy is VERY important.

In fact,
I would say that it would be VERY difficult
to learn how to strike with a relaxed fist
if one doesn’t first gain an understanding
of how to focus the energy with a tight fist.

Anyway,
those are my thoughts,
and I want to thank Damian for making me think,
and sharing his win with me.

If you have arthritis,
or ANY condition,
there are ways to keep training.
You just have to relax your thinking,
look around,
and find what works.

And you can find what works
in Yogata,
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/yogata-the-yoga-kata/

in The Punch
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/hard-punch/

and if you think I’m just talking,
check out the video on this page…
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/

Take care…and
have a great work out!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/4c-matrixing-chi-power/

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You can find all my books here!
http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/

http://www.amazon.com/Matrixing-Tong-Bei-Internal-Gung/dp/1507869290/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1423678613&sr=8-1&keywords=tong+bei

Tai Chi Chuan Totally Broken Down with Western Logic

Matrix Tai Chi Chuan

Speaking of Tai Chi Chuan,
I have just released Matrix Tai Chi Chaun.

ancient tai chi

Learning Tai Chi Chuan with western logic ~ click on image above!

I actually released this some years ago,
but I stopped selling it.
The reason
I was not happy with the book.
So,
being on a mountaintop
head above the clouds,
I was able to see what I had done and not done,
and I was able to write
one of the best matrixing books I have ever written!

Matrixing a posture
matrixing the postures
how to matrixing the techniques so you get 50 plus applications
matrixing the footwork so you get 25+ silk reeling exercises!
Two matrixes,
one for hard tai chi applications,
and the information so you can change that into hard and soft applications!

And here is something you’re really going to like…
I always talk about the blank spots one finds by using a matrix,
how you can find out the data that was hidden,
glossed over,
made mysterious,
forgotten…
In Matrix Tai Chi I really show how this happens,
and how I compare two matrixes to find all sorts of stuff!

And here’s something you should know…
Matrix TCC is based on this principle…
A beginner learns hard applications
an intermediate learns hard/soft applications
An expert learns soft applications.

Do you understand?
All the TCC boys and girls out there are pushing soft apps,
expecting people to jump from the floor to the roof!
They are missing the basic and intermediate steps!
No wonder TCC can get so messy and misunderstood!

In Matrix TCC you get all three steps.

You’re going to be able to do hard TCC within a couple of weeks,
and then start working on the hard/soft apps for a couple of months,
and then you’ll be capable of the REAL Tai Chi Chuan!

Now,
a couple of things.

If you ordered the old Matrix TCC,
and there was only a couple of you,
send me the third page of the matrix TCC book I sold you,
and I will send you the new Matrix TCC book.

The video is the same,
no need to replace that.
It is me and Nehemiah going through
the lines, applications, footworks, form and freestyles.

So if you ordered before,
you get the book for free.
Just follow the instructions above.

Now,
what is the difference between Matrix TCC and Five Army TCC,
a little and a lot.

Matrix TCC breaks it all down.
You even get a quick breakdown of the form.

But,
it is not as in depth and comprehensive
as my breakdown of the form and applications of the form
on Five Army TCC.

It’s a matter of time,
and how much I could pack on the course.

Matrix TCC has matrixing,
breaks TCC down like it has NEVER been broken down before.

Five Army TCC I go into the form in depth and detail,
so if you like what I am saying and doing on Matrix TCC,
then you are going to want to get the finer detailed analysis.

So you can now get Matrix TCC by itself,
or you can get the package of both Matrix and Five Army TCC,
and save a few bucks.

Here’s the link for Matrix TCC..

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2ba-matrix-tai-chi-chuan/

And here’s the link for the TCC package…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/tai-chi-chuan-package/

I haven’t had time to expand the larger Kung Fu package
but I will int he future.
If anybody is interested in that, let me know.

Anyway,
Matrix TCC is one CD and two DVDs,
Five Army TCC is four DVDs
Together, that’s about one CD and six DVDs
or a book and almost FIVE HOURS hours
of a new logic
presented one on one
in a very hands on format
so you can’t not understand!

AND YOU SHOULD KNOW
I always recommend the instant download,
because being on a mountaintop
I don’t get to the post office every day.

The videos are on youtube
and it is the simplest thing in the world
to find software to download videos from youtube for free.

If ever a disk or download doesn’t work
just let me know at aganzul@gmail.com
and I will see to fixing it as quickly as I can.

Now,
that’s about it.
I’ve been working hard on this,
didn’t even put out a newsletter last Friday,
but…this is the gold.
This course,
and especially the book
really puts the cap on Matrixing.
All the way from hard to soft,
so you can understand EVERYTHING,
and even turn around and teach it.

And in the shortest possible time.

Think about it,
people spend a couple of decades
to get what I’ve put together,
and then what they’ve got is slanted towards one art,
spotty,
messy,
filled with illogic and blank spots.
And you can get ALL the martial arts,
understand EVERYTHING
and within a couple of years.
Three or four months for each Matrixing course,
and you get DECADES of knowledge
without the mistakes and missteps.

So,
if you’ve just been reading this newsletter
it’s time to get your stuff in gear,
it’s not just…’be all you can be.’
It’s…’become more than anybody imagined!’

And if you’re ready for Matrix TCC,
the gloves are off!
Come and get it!

Don’t just have a great workout…
Have yourself a most spectacular journey!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2ba-matrix-tai-chi-chuan/

The Truth About Martial Arts Belt Ranking

Martial Arts Belt Ranking Made Understandable!

Martial Arts Belt Ranking does tend to be a little…strange. There are so many colored belts, what does a black belt mean, what is a master, and so on. In this article i will tell you where belt ranks came from, and what they actually mean.

Martial Arts Belt Ranking came from Japan, where it was originally used in swimming classes.

blind justice

Martial Arts like Karate and Judo picked up on them because it made it easier to arrange the karate class, or judo class, and teach it.

Before then people would join a martial arts school and there were junior students and senior students, and the point was to get your Teaching certificate.

Some people didn’t want to go that far, but the serious students did. After all, why do something half way? And, of course, a person who knew enough to teach would certain have sufficient self defense skills to protect himself.

In 1967 I joined a Kenpo Karate school, and the belt ranks were eight to Black Belt, and then eight after one had achieved Dan ranking, which is what a Black Belt is.

The colors were: white, orange, purple, blue, green, three stages of brown, and black. Black belts usually just put a tip, or a strip of white on the end of the belt for each advanced dan ranking.

Later, 1969, I jointed a classical school, and here was where I experienced martial arts belt ranking as it was meant to be. Sort of.

There were three belt ranks to Black Belt. These were white, green, and brown. But, to be honest, these had been subdivided into an eight and eight system.

The theory (one of the more predominant theories, I should say), was that one started as a white belt, like an unwritten piece of paper. Then one experienced the green of spring, became worn, like autumn, and finally entered winter.

This was an interesting sort of mythos. There was a logic to it, and it did describe the growing process, sort of.

But, what I noticed as the years rolled by was this: Martial Arts belt ranking doesn’t matter to people who have been in the martial arts for a while.

Yes, they are important, if only to spur the beginning student on. And, one should take pride in an achievement. It takes a lot of work, a lot of stick-to-ivity, to progress through the martial arts belt ranking systems.

But the real measure here is whether a person makes it to teacher.

Why do things half way, eh?

And that is the truth about Martial Arts belt ranking.

Here’s a great article on reality martial arts belt ranking. You can get started on Learning Martial Arts right here.

How to Build Ki Energy with the Body in Martial Arts

Builds Lotsa Ki Energy!

Ki Energy in the Martial Arts is always considered one of those mysterious magician’s gimmicks. Nobody knows how to do it, let alone explain it, yet ki Energy, or chi power or qigong or whatever you want to call it, has grabbed the public imagination.

What is fascinating is that using the body martial arts style, there is an automatic input of energy. Unfortunately, most people never understand it, and thus the effects are unappreciated.

ki energy

Martial Arts Ki Energy!


In this piece of writing I’m going to set forth a couple of rules which should help you generate more ki energy. You’ll find that understanding what you are doing is going to really help your martial arts practice.

When you sink into a martial arts stance you are attaching your body to the earth. To hold the ground or to launch the body through space matters not, there is an attachment of the body to the planet, and from this you build your martial arts power.

When you sink into stance you need to analyze the geometry of the body. The geometry should be based upon a simple triangle. The tan tien (the ‘one point’ located a couple of inches below the belly button) is the top of the triangle, the line between the feet provide the base.

Doesn’t matter what martial arts stance you take – horse stance, back stance, whatever – just examine the triangle and make sure the angles of the triangle are functioning.

Functioning means that you are doing two things.

First, breath to the tan tien.

Second, lower the stance, so that you feel more weight, and thus create more energy.

Do these two things for a while, breathing and grounding, and you will find the function in your stance, and ki energy will start to build in your body and manifest in your martial art.

Karate vs Kung Fu vs Aikido…or whatever the fighting discipline…it doesn’t matter. The stance is the item. The art is a stylistic build upon the stance…and the techniques you do will all be mounted upon the stances.

Now, a couple of things to be wary of.

Don’t turn the feet too far to the sides, or turn them too far inwards, seek an alignment of the feet that supports the intention (direction) of the stance, and therefore the technique. This can be confusing until you realize the simplicity of how everything works.

Keep the tan then inside the base of the feet, lest your triangle topple.

Relax.

Breath rhythmically with your motion. Breath in when the body contracts, breath out when the body expands.

Do you see how basic these martial arts instructions for generating ki energy are? The difficulty lies only in thinking that the stances, which is to say the various postures, are complex, and then having to resolve them by inspection until they are simple and make sense.

Read that last sentence again, it is important, it tells you one of the reasons people make the martial arts such a lo-o-ong subject to study.

The truth of the matter is that the body can be rebuilt in as little as three months, and this includes making real and usable ki power. Watch the US army boot camp, or even one of the PX 90 infomercial ads on late night television.

Whether you change the body, and start manufacturing ki power depends not on years of rare exercises  and drills that you don’t understand, but simply resolving the simple stances and techniques and martial arts kata to the principles explained here.

For more data, check out this bit of writing on Martial Arts Chi Power. Or, if you want, all the principles that I’ve hinted at in this article on ki power are actually given in the Master Instructor Online Course at Monster Martial Arts.

Dragon Gung Fu FollowsTiger Gung Fu!

Tiger Gung Fu Transforms into Dragon Gung Fu

Dragon Gung Fu refers to internal martial arts training, and tiger Gung fu refers to external martial arts systems.

Dragon Gung Fu would include such Chinese martial arts as Pa Kua Chang, Tai Chi Chuan, and so on.

dragon gung fu

Official Symbol of Gung Fu at Monster Martial Arts

 


Tiger Gung Fu would include such systems as Hung Gar, but would go outside the Chinese to such systems as Shotakan Karate (Tiger Emblem), Kyukoshinkai, and so on.

The main difference between the hard and the soft, or the external and internal martial arts systems, is emphasis on muscles in the hard, and emphasis on the growth of Chi from the Tan Tien in the hard.

Though, to be honest, do the Tiger Gung Fu styles long enough, and you will morph into the harder Tiger systems.

Now, most people consider that all you have to do is gear your training to development of tan tien based martial arts, and that will transform you into a dragon gung fu stylist. And this is true. But, there is an easier way, one that works more in conjunction with Tiger Gung Fu styles.

This means that if you do what I am about to tell you, you can easily transform your hard style into a soft style with just a little shift in your training.

To make the transformation from tiger Gung fu methods to dragon, first learn how to make grab arts out of the self defense techniques you practice in the forms.

This can be easily done, and probably the best example of this is the Matrix Aikido method.

Now, here is where the change really starts. You must learn how to use less and less force when doing those grab arts.

Instead of slamming with the hips, learn how to nudge and unbalance, and let the unbalancing technique take its course.

Now, I could tell you dozens of things, but I shant. It would turn into a complex discussion, instead of a conceptual principle.

Heck, take apart those techniques by the thousands, get complex, but always refer back to this principle of using less and less effort.

And that is the way you transform Tiger Gung Fu into Dragon Gung Fu.

Here’s a great article on how to make Dragon Gung Fu out of Tiger Gung Fu, and here’s an interesting online martial arts course on the subject.

How to Lose Reaction Time When You Do Kung Fu

Reaction time, when you do kung fu, is a fascinating monster. I say monster because it is the one thing people have that they should get rid of. It is one thing that can get you killed faster than a bomb in the diapers.

Reaction time is reaction, which means that it is something occurring after something else has happened. Do you understand what this means? If you possess reaction time, you are moving second and behind whoever is launching a punch at your face.

Now you are forced to move, and this because of the attacker’s move, rather than in keeping with what you want to do. That means you are the target, and you must get out of the way, build a good block, or whatever. It means you are not doing what you want to do.

The easiest way to understand this situation is if there is attacker A on the A spot. And a defender B on the B spot. And a third spot, maybe off to the left, which we will label spot C.

The time it takes A to move to B, B can move to C. But B MUST move at the same time. If B moves after A, then he is going to get clocked.

And, if B moves because of something he learned in a class, or because of an exercise, or because of anything else, then it is like he is moving yesterday. B must watch A ‘in this moment,’ and he must move as he wishes and not because of what A wishes. This is the only way for B to actually live to fight another day.

There is, oddly enough, how A sees this situation, and of actually being able to hit somebody. If you have seen how many misses there are in the mixed Martial Arts fights, then you will understand what I am saying. Simply, A is punching to where B is, but B is no longer in that spot.

In other words, for A to actually strike his opponent, he must strike not to where B is, because B is going to move, and spot B is where he used to be. And he must not attempt to change mid strike, for that will destroy his base and take power out of the strike. The trick is merely to understand and analyze the one sentence: in the time A attempts to move to B, B can move to C.

In summation, let me say that many people talk about timing and slipping strikes and that sort of thing, but they usually don’t really understand the equation I have given you here. To understand this equation-in the time A moves to B, B moves to C-you should write it out, along with every fight situation you can imagine, on a piece of paper. No matter what martial art you study, Kenpo, Kung Fu, Aikido, or whatever, this piece of data will enable you to shorten and even get rid of your reaction time, and elevate your martial art to a much higher level.

The Best Way To Do Gung Fu Kicks

I say Gung Fu kicks, but the advice of this article holds for Karate Kicks, Taekwondo kicks, or any martial arts kicks. There are two things that we need to cover when considering the best way to kick somebody’s, uh…fanny. One is keeping to the basic kicks, and the other is the mechanics of the kicks involved.

gung fu kick

Don't just focus your fist, learn how to focus your feet!

 


When doing Gung Fu kicks one can get carried away with a lengthy list of circus moves. This includes jumping, spinning, and contorting in all sorts of ways. These things, however, while a blast and a benefit to the student, are not always good in a street brawl. Thus, when practicing martial arts kicks one should stick to the four kicks: front, side, wheel (roundhouse), or spinning rear kick.

When training in these leg moves make sure that you raise the knee. Raising the knee commits the hips, and therefore the whole body. A good tool to help you do this is to practice kicking over a chair.

Make sure that you use the correct part of the foot when striking. The basic parts are the toes, the ball of the foot, the instep, and the heel. When selecting which part of the foot to utilize, remember that the smallest striking area will focus the greatest amount of power.

Always turn the hips into your technique. Turning the hips commits the whole weight of the body into self defense move. This must be done quick and whiplike, all pieces moving as one functioning unit.

Do not waste time in the chambering position. One must kick like a whip, up from the ground to the target point, and back down from the target point to the ground. To hold in chamber is to take the power out of the kick, and to render it into pieces.

Kick at the right distance. Just as you shouldn’t fist when at foot distance, don’t foot when at fist distance. The better strategy is not to rob yourself of power and range, but to get so good at the basics that you can’t be stopped.

Most important rule of all: do hundreds, even thousands, of kicks every day. The fool who thinks ten kicks per foot per kick per day is enough is just that…a fool. Only by dedicating oneself, by going fanatic and mad dog in your training, whether in Gung Fu kicks, or whatever type of leg movement you are practicing, will you hope to obtain the best benefits that your martial arts discipline has to offer.